Gov. JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) recently announced Fast-Track Public Infrastructure Grants, an initiative to accelerate work on planned public infrastructure projects around the state.
According to the governor's office, the state is expediting $25 million of existing Rebuild Illinois funding to local public infrastructure projects that are ready to begin work this summer, as many local governments face lost revenues, impacting their ability to finance these projects.
While the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic places a unique economic burden on communities across the state, this shift in grant funding will help accelerate construction on planned infrastructure projects, while helping return skilled labor to work.
The Fast-Track program leverages funding from Rebuild Illinois, the state's multi-year capital plan, for allocation to shovel-ready projects just in time for the summer construction season. Fast-Track front-loads a portion of an existing Notice of Funding, to expedite funds available for grants ranging in size between $500,000 and $5 million. Funding will be awarded on a rolling basis, with projects submitted in underserved areas to be given priority.
The Fast-Track grants will help restore key public works projects that may have otherwise been cancelled and will help skilled labor return to the job in time for the construction season. Funds can be used to support projects such as expansions of water and sewer systems and reinvestment to modernize schools and other public buildings.
Eligible grantees are local governments and other public entities with significant public infrastructure projects that could commence work within 90 days of receiving award notice.
Source funding for the Fast Track grants is generated by Rebuild Illinois—a $45 billion plan passed by Governor Pritzker to provide the state's first comprehensive capital plan in more than a decade. DCEO has been charged with spearheading a number of Rebuild Illinois programs, including investments to expand broadband capacity, fund new public works projects, incentivize business development, and other initiatives designed to promote economic growth for all communities across the state.
SOURCE: Office of Gov. JB Pritzker